The Lost Generation

Samia Meah

Focusing on Spain, Great Britain and Germany; The Lost Generation is a visual study exploring the quality of life and prospects of young adults within Europe.

The media labels them as ‘lost’ due to the difficulties they face when trying to acquire the same life goals as the generations before them.

Each person is asked the same questions and photographed in the same style.

Watch them explain what it means to be a young adult today.

© Samia Meah 2016

Adrian
Spain

Adrian is 28 this year but it is the first year of his life he has been able to live out of the parental home. Adrian’s room in his flat-share can only fit a single bedside it – there is no walking space and he can touch either side of the room, with his arms stretched out. He laughs at this fact, but I can see it is a difficult topic to talk about. He tries to keep a positive tone. He explains that prior to this he’d spent many years studying in a room in his mum’s flat where she insisted on hanging a picture of her breast feeding him. He said that the photograph summarised the kind of life he was living.
"A lot of people around me were unemployed, without any chances… they were looking for jobs and there was no offer. I have been one of these people."

Camilla
Spain

"My biggest fear for my future is to work somewhere I really don’t like for the rest of my life, just because I need to work."

Valentina
Spain

Valentina is 27, lives in Spain and is currently unemployed.
"Me and my mum have to share a bed because there isn’t enough space."
In the UK 33% of young people said they were worried about their mental health and more than 1 in 5 young people said they felt depressed. Young Women's Trust Survey 2016

Tosin
UK

Tosin is 25 and was born and raised in Camden where he is currently living in his parental home. He works as a gym assistant.
"With regards to being able to rent, it’s just not possible. You see some of the prices and it doesn’t cater to your average working person at all."
In 2015 34% of 18-34 year olds were living with their parents in the UK.
EU-SILC Survey

Rob
UK

Rob is 28 and currently studying a Masters degree.
"They expect you to have all the experience but then they expect you to be a junior, which is quite odd."

Lulu
UK

When Lulu completed her degree she returned to London where she grew up, in London she struggled with finding a job and for the past 6 years she has had various roles in many different industries including retail, research and tech.
"It’s important that we all know about these issues so that we can talk about them. But, also we need to do more. We can’t rely on our government, I just have no faith them whatsoever."

Amei
Germany

Amei grew up in Germany where she attended University.
"Our generations world is super global and super unified, and social media connects all of us. Most of our generation has been, without choice, raised with an internet. So our size of the world is very different to that of our parents generation. To us, the world is much more accessible."
In Germany the average youth unemployment rate was 6.8% in September 2016, the second lowest in Europe. - EU Labour Force Survey

Konstantin
Germany

Konstantin is an Undergraduate student based in Berlin.
"Compared to what I know you pay back in Britain, it’s very low, we pay €320 per semester."

Lars
Germany

Lars lives in Berlin and is currently between jobs.
"This is our future you are dealing with, you are limiting our options to live and work."
In the UK's 2015 general election only 54% of people between the ages of 25-34 voted and only 43% of those between the ages of 18-24 voted.